29 October, 2005

Update to "The Rest of the Story"

Wherein the AP finds an actual reporter in Baghdad...

Last Tuesday I commented on a news story about the 2000th U.S. military death. Buried deep in the long article was a vague and confusing description of a soldier (SPC Green) having "taken out" the driver of one of the VBEIDs used to attack two Baghdad hotels last Saturday. I concluded: "I can't help wondering where the headlines about SPC Green are..."

Well, you could've knocked me over with a feather this morning! One week later, we finally have the story that should've been written the day of the bombings: GI Kills Suicide Bomber Who Attacked Hotel.

BAGHDAD, Iraq - A U.S. soldier shot and killed one of three suicide bombers who attacked the Palestine Hotel complex before he could reach his intended target and that probably saved lives in the building, the military said Saturday.
With the exception of the fact that the article almost reads as if the attack happened today, it's one of the most straight-forward and balanced news articles about the U.S. military in Iraq that I've read in ages: no snarky mentions of total U.S. casualties or an "increasingly effective insurgency," (etc.), the U.S. military "says" (instead of "claims"), Al Qaeda's statements are "not independently verified," and all sources associated with the story are consulted.

Amazing. Looks like somebody actually committed real journalism here. Keep your eyes on Mr. Wagner!

UPDATE: I went searching for more information bout Mr. Wagner, and discovered that he was actually in the hotel at the time of the attacks. He's quoted in this story from USA Today.

UPDATE II: Powerline has a more detailed report and analysis from an Army Major (there seems to be some confusion as to whether it's "SPC" Green or "SGT" Green).